Are superhero books too violent? It is a question I will soon have to answer for myself when my son gets a little older. As parents, we walk such a fine line between sheltering and keeping them safe, am I right? We want them to be safe, yet know the dangers of the world, but not be scared, yet be scared enough to know right from wrong. Phew! That will make anyone’s head spin!
Are Superhero Books Too Violent?
One of our mom readers contacted us looking for a little advice on how to handle a situation she found herself in at her local library. Her son, 4 years old, loves superheros (what boy doesn’t?) He chose a book that they could read together, so she was taken aback when she was reading to her son and read that Spiderman’s uncle was murdered. So what do you do in this situation? Do you want your 4 year old son (or daughter) exposed to such violence, even if it is coming from a superhero story?
Seize the opportunity: You could look at this as an opportunity to explain how there are bad people in the world and the superheros are the good people. It is a good spot to open up the conversation with your child about good and bad behaviors. You don’t have to go into how the man was ‘murdered’ but you can talk about how someone hurt him and how that person is not a good person.
Talk to the librarian: One thing you can do is mention your concern to the librarian. Maybe they can move the books to another section that might be more appropriate. There could be other moms who feel the same way and just haven’t said anything. You are the advocate for your child, if you feel something is not right you can say something. Just keep in mind that other parents may feel differently about the book and have a right to read it to their child if they choose to, so asking for an outright ban is not the way to go.
Let it go: Of course the other option is to sing the praise of Elsa and let it go. Just tell your child you can’t read those books, they are not good for him right now, but maybe next year, or when he is a little older. After all, you are the parent and what you say goes. If you feel it is not appropriate for your child to read about right now, then don’t check those books out from the library.
Parenting should come with a rule book and a troubleshooting manual! When you leave the hospital, in addition to checking your car seat, they should hand you over a big book of things you are going to encounter and how to handle them. But they don’t, and we are left to figure these fun situations out on our own. Thankfully these days we have technology and social media so we can bounce ideas off of other moms. Which is exactly what I want you to do below, share how you might have handled this superhero situation below in the comments!